The Brazilians are favored to come out of Group A, but it won't be an easy ride. Mexico, though facing instability in their front office and management, has a consistent presence on the pitch. Despite failing to get to the group stage in 2004 and 2008 plus failing to qualify for the 2010 World Cup, the Croatians have proven to be able to play with the big squads. Nobody should expect a lot out of Cameroon during this World Cup.
Brazil (-445) Croatia (+793) Mexico (+894) Cameroon (+1900)
In what is sure to be an entertaining Group, we have two of the world's soccer powers in Spain and Holland and an emerging Chilean team. The Dutch will look to get revenge in a World Cup 2010 finals rematch against Spain on June 13. The European teams must be scared of Chile though, as the team's strong form and advantage of playing in South America gives them an edge. Australia may see some huge scores against them as the other squads may need to look at goal differential.
Spain (-151) Holland (+294) Chile (+352) Australia (+4000)
Group C is really anybody's group to win. Colombia is getting the nod as favorites and rightfully so as they boast a young and powerful attack. If Alberto Zaccheroni can get the Japanese squad together and help eliminate dumb mistakes, they could go further than many expect. Ivory Coast has been teasing us with potential for years and easily passed through qualifiers. If Greece can keep their stellar defense strong and manage to score goals, they could easily represent the group in the knockout rounds.
Colombia (+111) Japan (+373) Ivory Coast (+313) Greece (+613)
Another tough group that will see three teams competing for two spots in the knockout rounds. If Oscar Tabarez can get the most out of his strikers, especially Luis Suarez, Uruguay may be able to outscore any team in the tournament. After a disastrous performance in the 2010 World Cup, Italy revamped the entire organization and will be looking to reassert their dominance. England could very well come out of the group if they can tackle the mental game they are battling with themselves. And Costa Rica's tough defense may be the deciding factor of which other teams move on.
Uruguay (+183) Italy (+183) England (+213) Costa Rica (+2400)
France had some interesting moments since the last World Cup, but the team has seemingly settled into their own and are the favorites in Group E. Switzerland is a young and hungry team. The Swiss have quietly developed into a soccer powerhouse, currently ranked eighth in the FIFA rankings. Ecuador has an amazing 7W-1D-0L at home through qualification, but winless away. Honduras will put up a respectable effort, but don't expect world-beaters.
France (-109) Switzerland (+261) Ecuador (+359) Honduras (+2000)
Group F looks like a race of second as Argentina should easily breeze through the group stages. After Argentina, the group is up in the air. This is Bosnia-Herzegovina's first World Cup, but the rookies have a chance to move on based on the talent level surrounding them. Nigeria is a big strong team that works hard, but has an iffy-at-best record in qualifying so far. Iran surprised a lot of people by qualifying, but a consistent effort may not be enough here.
Argentina (-390) Bosnia-Herzegovina (+562) Nigeria (+845) Iran (+1900)
Group G is going to be a tough challenge for both the United States and Ghana. Germany is a powerhouse, but has frequently shown a lack of concentration and has gotten bit by trap games. Portugal has an amazing defense feeding forward to arguably the best goalscorer on the planet in Cristiano Ronaldo. Though the Americans have seen a growth in soccer culture and play, a tough task may very well send them home early. Ghana has a history of showing up against both the U.S. and Germany, but that alone won't be enough for this team.
Germany (-130) Portugal (+232) United States (+1250) Ghana (+970)
Belgium has their most promising international team in some years and should easily cruise to the knockout round in a shallow group. Russia has a lot of things going for them this year, notable a style of play specifically designed for the players on the team and could get their way through the group on the chalkboard. South Korea needed a lot of help to even make the World Cup, but will be helped by a weak group. A young team that could really be building towards the future Algeria looks to be out of the knockouts, but it is far from impossible.